Once logged into your Cloudflare account click (+ Add a Site) and type in your domain. With your site active click on DNS and adjust your records as shown below. The key at this point is to make sure the Proxy status is set to DNS only. This example shows setting up a basic root domain and not a subdomain.
The A record is your root domain and the public IP address to your Ghost Droplet.
The CNAME record sets the subdomain www to point to your root domain.
The MX records will need to be added if your domain has email active.
The next step is to create a Ghost Droplet (1-Click App) within DigitalOcean Marketplace.
Below are the options that I selected to setup the droplet.
Plan – Standard
$5/month virtual machine
Add Volume – None
Choose a datacenter region that is closest to you.
Select additional options – I selected monitoring for additional metrics on the vm.
Finalize and create
Once logged into the Ghost Droplet the install process with ask for two items. The first is the root domain http://example.com and the second is an email address for the free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate.
Your Ghost blog should now be available at your domain http://example.com
Having Cloudflare set to DNS only allows the Let’s Encrypt process to complete the SSL certificate setup process. Once it’s complete go back to DNS and under Proxy status enable the cloud icon to Proxied. With this enabled the site will now be served through the Cloudflare CDN network.